May 22, 2013
Libertad Frigate docks at Mar del Plata Navy base
The Libertad Frigate, which was impounded for more than two months in the port of Tema in Ghana, moored at the Navy base in Mar del Plata City, where President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner headed the ceremony.
"Welcome back to our homeland," said Fernández de Kirchner as she began her speech at the port after boarding the vessel and greeting its crew.
The vessel approached the port as it travelled near the beach so that the tourists that were waiting for its arrival could see it.
The frigate was followed by 150 sport and fishing ships, and the Espora Corvette.
The vessel arrived 21 days after it left the Tema port in Ghana, where it had been impounded for 77 days by a Ghanaian court order following a claim from a hedge fund over debt repayment.
Krichnerite organizations, government officials and tourists received the Libertad frigate with flags, and two hours later, the Head of State boarded the ship for the first time and greeted its crew in a celebratory event.
The celebrations included musical performances and fireworks, and Mar del Plata Municipal Control Undersecretary Adrián Alveolite confirmed streets were blocked to facilitate access for marchers.
Meanwhile, anti-government protesters held a pot-banging protest near the dock of the frigate's arrival to protest against the President and her administration.
Regarding special logistical arrangements, Navy correspondent Oscar Filippi specified earlier today that “the premises in front of the western dock have been conditioned, and all the required organization is being carried out,” adding that the Navy is in charge of “the nautical activity to escort its entry to the port.”
Filippi also clarified that access to people seeking to attend the Libertad’s arrival has been marked with fencing from the “gate next to the National Institute of Fishery Research and Development” up to the “Stella Maris chapel, to the north.”
In a communiqué released yesterday morning, Mothers of Plaza de Mayo Association head Hebe de Bonafini celebrated the imminent arrival of the Libertad, affirming the institution “fervently salutes and hugs all the comrades that defended the liberty and sovereignty of the frigate in the port of Ghana.”